Auditor-General Of Nigeria Demands Explanation From Central Bank Over Missing $4.5 Billion

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The Auditor-General of the Federation, Shaaka Chira, has formally requested clarification from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) regarding the disappearance of a $4.5 billion fund.

The inquiry stems from an audit report issued by the Office of the Accountant General, revealing a significant discrepancy in Nigeria’s foreign reserves during the years 2018 and 2019.

According to the report, Nigeria’s foreign reserves, which amounted to US$42,594,842,852.75 in December 2018, experienced a notable decline to US$38,092,720,200.72 in 2019. This reduction indicates an unaccounted-for sum of US$4,502,122,652.03.

The audit report highlights that this breach occurred amidst the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and during the tenure of Godwin Emefiele, the former governor of the CBN, who is currently facing corruption allegations in court.

In response to the findings, Chira has called upon the CBN to provide detailed explanations for the missing funds. Emphasizing the potential repercussions on the stability of the exchange rate, the audit report cites Section 25 of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007, which mandates the institution to maintain external reserves at levels conducive to the Nigerian economy and monetary system.

The demand for accountability underscores the importance of transparency and adherence to regulatory standards within Nigeria’s financial sector.